Some people keep track of all of their income and expenditure for budgeting and saving reasons. Would you?
Off the shelf software can help you with budgeting and managing your money but, it can be a real ‘pain’ having to enter every transaction and keeping track. Very few of the tools out there can feed automatically from your accounts and so you need to slowly input all the important information. Does this help you understand your spending or show how you could spend more wisely or offer suggestions on making your savings work harder? If you are willing to spend the time inputting all the information, and you understand the software, you're probably the least likely to need the help as you already do it! But if it was online and filled in where possible by your bank....
Some banks are beginning to offer useful capabilities like wearable technology, quick balance and impulse save solutions. Some banks are now trying to help with keeping customers better informed by apps about their balance and provide simple spending tools. Predominantly though, banks aren't really very customer support focused, they would rather offer deals or financial incentives to attract people; not because of a long term desire to do the right thing but purely to increase their customer numbers albeit for the short term. Is this because of regulation, concerns over untested software or, is it just costing too much or just not in their DNA?
We think its because of cost; why provide more than limited tools when banks are already making significant offers on cash back, free accounts and 'inclusive' offers to attract customers - after all, there is only so much they can do without damaging profits. More, importantly many of these offers carry charges which reduce the real benefits and act to divert your attention from the high fees for things like overdrafts - go over by a penny or two and all the financial gains are negated. Therefore, it is fair to say that some banks provide some tools but they just don't believe customers will switch bank accounts for service just for rates.
We're all looking forward to some really innovative and useful smart phone payment systems coming out in the next few years. To help you track your spending, we want to be able to deliver some useful, easy to use and understandable systems to keep you in control of your money, understand where it goes and help when you need it most.
We would like to know what customers might want in terms of budgeting support and online financial support tools. Let us know what you'd like. We see providing useful services as a market edge and something customers want - what do you think?